The importance of training

To peacefully enjoy the experience of the journey

The “Cammino d’Abruzzo“ is easily accessible to everyone not just athletes.
The spirit and the motivation are fundamental skills to the pathway compared to the physical strength undertaken through it. However the pathway is an important experience which require the essentials of a good organization and also mental and physical preparation.

It is necessary to train our body to:
- walk for a few hours without feeling too much the effort;
- tolerate fatigue on ankles and knees;
- tolerate weight of the backpack;
- check the equipment you have chosen to use (especially socks and shoes)
- discover one's weaknesses

Before starting the Cammino we advise you to prepare yourself to long walks at least two months before starting the pathway by walking as frequently as possible (from two to three times a week).
Initially 1 hour walk with fast pace is enough, then gradually lengthen the time.
Important! In order to avoid possible problems we recommend to use shoes or sandals you planned to wear on the way also during training sessions.

It is equally important to listen to our body negative reactions trying to understand its causes and taking fast remedy. For examples unsuitable shoes, backpack badly placed or postural problems.

Problems on the path

Some practical tips to relieve them

There are three possible common physical afflictions: blisters, tendons inflammation, muscle pains. Here's what to bring and what to do in case of minor illnesses. Blisters: they can appear due to the rubbing between skin and socks. The factors which may facilitate the appearance are the hardness of the shoe, the excessive sweating of the feet, the excessive weight of the backpack, unsuitable socks.

Tips to prevent blisters and protect the health of the feet:
• massage them for long time with special lotions before leaving and after showering: it is mainly recommended shea butter or vaseline cream. In addition to significantly reduce the friction between socks and skin use lotions which will protect, nourish and elasticize the skin. Products are easily available in herbalist points or pharmacies.
• during the journey wash your feet whenever is possible (at least once during the day), dry them well, massage them with shea butter and change the socks, making sure they do not make folds.
• keep them as much as possible in the air.

We advise you to follow these indications in addition to previously mentioned, comfortable and proven shoes, suitable socks, preventive training.
However, when blisters come out act quickly by preventing them from breaking: in that case, be careful because the skin is more exposed to infections and damages. The blister should be emptied of the liquid: disinfect a common needle with a cotton strand (passing it above a flame) and
place it by going through it with the needle, so that the strand remains inside the blister having an entry hole and an exit one. The relief will be immediate; the blister deflates immediately expelling the liquid.
Press it gently. The cotton strand will drain the liquid, preventing the blister from swellings and letting the old skin protect the wound. It will fall by itself when the new skin is ready under the wound.
Never scratch the dead skin before it is time and clean the wound after each walk.

Compeed patches or similars are widespread among walkers. Their ideal use is on the red skin to prevent the formation of the blisters. The Compeed creates a second skin that protects and avoids skin degeneration. Once the blister has formed, however, it will no longer carries out its function and it may create problems if poorly applied.

Tendons inflammations

Often tendons inflammations are the consequence of unhealed blisters which
force you to walk in the wrong way shifting the balance of the body. Tendons inflammations also have direct relationship with the excessive weight of the backpack. Tendonities can appear especially in the first days of walking if strengths are not used appropriately. We advise to plan some short stages initially, so that the body get used to fatigue. We recommend to plan stops to rest, unloading weights and taking off your shoes.

Inflammations must be treated before they get worsen by applying ice (or cold water,applied with soaked cloths), ointments and/or anti-inflammatory pads or elastic cotton bandages. If pain persists or worsens, it is advisable to consult a doctor (who will for sure advise you to rest a few days. In this case let's take the advise even if it costs efforts for at least one or two days: insisting on walking can cause greater pain, trouble and may force us a early re-entry).
By walking for a long time the muscles tend to shorten: stretching lengthens the
muscles and give immediate relief and it helps prevent the occurrence of tendonities. Stretching should be done often at least in the middle of the day and at the end of the day when the muscles are still warm.
Another remedy is to wet the legs with cold water keeping them high; even a good
massage will be appreciate.

Joint pains

Joint pain (especially knee pain, which are caused by the continuous weight of the
body and backpack): you may need an anti-inflammatory and, in some cases, a painkiller. If you usually suffer of joint pain prevent it by using knee pads (or similar) from the very first days.
There is no need to bring a large amount of medicines: you will find some pharmacies along the way (surely you will find help from others or some inhabitant of the places crossed).
Attention: medicines to treat minor illnesses can be released directly from the Pharmacist. For specific medicines, especially if they are important and taken continuously, it is necessary to know the principal active substance.